Monthly Archives: February 2015

Jarenth Plays Civilization: Beyond Earth — Episode 25: Endgame

In the last episode of Jarenth Plays Beyond Earth, General Vadim Kozlov made his move for the end game. Like I always knew he would. He timed it perfectly, too, waiting until I was just about to launch my final attack on Hutama. Did he think I’d be too consumed by bloodlust to even pay attention to him, perhaps? “I’ll let the world burn if Hutama burns with it”, that sort of thing? It wouldn’t be entirely unexpected of me, I’ll be the first to grant that… but no. Under absolutely no circumstances will I just sit back and let Vadim Kozlov snatch up the victory. Not after everything that happened. Not now, not ever.

Last episode was, to put it bluntly, a mad dash to get my forces to Slavic Federation lands before Vadim achieved his final victory. I contracted Suzanne to run early interference, but knowing Beyond Earth’s AI, I have absolutely no illusions that she’ll actually fight this war to its necessary conclusion. No, thwarting Vadim will be entirely up to me. And now that, after about a dozen turns, my warships have finally made landfall, it’s probably no exaggeration to say that this conflict will be nothing less than the final battle ever to be fought over the future of Terra Atlantea.

After the break: the war to end all wars.

Indie Wonderland: The Old City: Leviathan

I received access to a press build of The Old City: Leviathan, currently the defining game for one Postmod Softworks, back in November 2014. As I was ankle-deep in the developing madness of VNADS at the time, I figured I would shunt it to the nearest available review slot. Surely, I reasoned, I wouldn’t be doing this visual novel nonsense for much longer than November?

Well, long-story-that-you-may-have-been-there-for short: it did. November came and December went with more visual novels than I could shake several sticks at. And then January held some interesting immediate eye-catchers… isn’t she hard, the life of a hobbyist games writer? But all throughout the months, I never really forgot about The Old City. And now, at the start of yet another busy games release wave — seriously, I’m looking forward to the next few weeks so much — I figured I’d either give The Old City the time and attention it deserves, or I’d have to commit to ignoring it forever. And I’d like to think I’m at least too much a professional for that last one.

(Spoiler levels: Narrative, mild to somewhat high. Mechanical, high.)

(Game source: Developer press build, by way of mailing list.)

After the break: The Old City: Leviathan. Is it about an old city? Surprisingly, yes.

Jarenth Plays Civilization: Beyond Earth — Episode 24: Gods And Kings

In the last episode of Jarenth Plays Beyond Earth, I daresay I kicked Hutama’s Polystralian ass from here to breakfast. Even though his impressive rise through the technological ranks allowed him to keep pace with me on a quality level, the combination of his failed assault on Gran Éxito — come for the sunk Polystralian warships, stay because we still haven’t figured out a way past the aliens — and a lack of focus in his movement and unit choices meant I was easily able to sweep past his defensive army. I took the city of Maeva back and made it mine forevermore, and I set the city of Rahi on fire as a signal that you do not mess with Franco-Iberia.

Now, my armies are stationed in the ocean strait and on the coast just outside Freeland, Hutama’s capital. Poised to slag Hutama’s final defenses, conquer and burn his capital city, and end any possible threat that the Commonwealth of the Pacific could ever pose to me in the near to far future. And man, am I looking forward to this. This should be good.

After the break: Yeah, minor spoilers: it doesn’t work out that way.

The Official Ninja Blues Patreon Official Annoucement

That’s right, readers! The post title kinda tells you everything you need to know here, but just to re-iterate: today marks the launch of the official Ninja Blues Patreon campaign. If you’ve ever wanted to support us in a more direct and hassle-free way than clicking our one banner ad over and over, here’s your chance.

We’ve put up a whole story about the how and why of our campaign over on the Patreon page, so I won’t repeat that here verbatim: if you’re interested, it’s right there for the reading. I will, however, embed our Patreon campaign video here. So you can watch that without leaving the comfort of Ninja Blues, if that’s more your speed.

If you guys have any questions, comments, remarks, suggestions… you’re free to post those in the comments here, of course, that’s kind of what this post is all about. But as a more interactive alternative, the two of us — Jarenth and Ninjustin — will be streaming on our Hitbox channel tomorrow (2014-02-06) at what I hesitate to call the ‘usual time’, 2:00 PM Central Time / 9:00 PM Central European Time. Here’s a handy time zone converter. We’ll be happy to answer any questions you may have, and Jarenth will also be playing Volgarr the Viking, a notoriously difficult game he’s never actually played for himself.

Hope to see you there! And again, any questions you may have are also more than welcome in the comments here.

Thanatos Plays Dragon Age, Ch. 4

When we last left off, the hero of our upcoming epic journey got taken down by a lazy backhand from an upstart noble who, while technically named Vaughn, we’re going to persist in calling “Von Dickface”. Because I enjoy the wordplay, that’s why.

Seriously, it has to do with how German names interact with noble titles and… never mind.

Seriously, it has to do with how German names interact with noble titles and… never mind.

Anyway, after a short loading screen, we’re treated to a shot of an Elven lady in another terrible-looking dress chanting “Maker keep us, Maker protect us” over and over. Almost like she’s feverishly praying for help. There’s a few things wrong with this, just within the context of Dragon Age Lore, but here’s the big one which always sticks in my almost-entirely metaphorical craw: it makes no sense with the religion as it’s established.

After the break: ooh, isn’t *that* a nasty teaser? Keep reading to figure out *why* this makes no sense! And also, to read the continuing adventures of Robin Hoodette, I guess.

The Spelunky Stream: Youtube Edition

Hey everybody, Ninjustin here. I realized recently that Hitbox hasn’t been keeping our old stream recordings on its online storage. Apparently it deletes each recording after a few weeks, or something? But I do have them all saved locally, so I figured that people who don’t get to show up to some or any of our streams deserve to watch them too, if they’re inclined.

I’m starting with the I Am Bread and Spelunky stream we did almost two months ago. It took awhile to upload two hours of stream footage to Youtube, but here it is in all its glory!

You can skip the first minute and a half if you want to get to the part where anything happens. It’s a few minutes of I Am Bread followed by a few hours of Spelunky, with me, Jarenth and Val talking over it, so view at your own leisure/risk.

More, bigger news coming soon.

Jarenth Plays Civilization: Beyond Earth — Episode 23: Onward And Upward

In the last episode of Jarenth Plays Beyond Earth, I survived Hutama’s dastardly and unprovoked attack on colonies that are entirely mine, have always been mine, and history books will show were never initially his to begin with. Sure, Hutama took one of those mine-not-his colonies for himself… but between me repelling a secondary attack on Gran Éxito, Samatar and Suzanne going to war on my behest, and me spending Energy like a drunken sailor on shore leave to rapidly build a sizable army — so nothing like a sailor on shore leave at all, then — I don’t really see this unlawful occupation lasting longer than a handful of turns. At best.

I mean, I don’t see Hutama’s entire civilization lasting more than a handful of turns at best, at this point. But let’s not get ahead of ourselves re: the terrible vengeance I intend to wreak. Take back colony first, stomp Hutama into dirt and cinders second.

After the break: I’ve been overconfident with regard to my military might before. I am not being overconfident right now.

Indie Shortieland: Finding Teddy

Heya readers. I didn’t have time to play anything substantial last week: the double whammy of nerve-related pains (early in the week) and a 15-hour board game marathon (later in the week) ate up enough of my time to preclude playing anything substantial this week. No full Indie Wonderland this week, I’m sorry. Luckily, and as the title of this article implies, I’m hardly leaving you with nothing: this is hardly the first time I’ve had to make do with insufficient time. I’ve been keeping a set of screenshots of and impressions about Look At My Game‘s Finding Teddy in my emergency stash for a few weeks now. For just such an occasion. Finding Teddy isn’t a very suitable game for long-form review anyway, owing both to its spoiler-sensitive gameplay nature and its duration — I completed the whole thing with 40 minutes on record — so this might be one of those rare and enviable occasions where two wrongs do make a right. And not making full use of a celestial alignment like that would be too wasteful to even contemplate.

(Spoiler levels: Narrative, almost complete from the word go. Mechanically, also that.)

(Game source: Bought it myself, I think. I don’t remember? It could’ve been from a bundle. Or maybe it’s been in my Steam library all along.)

After the break: Finding Teddy. Is Teddy lost? Why is Teddy lost? What does Teddy mean to me, that I am trying to find them so badly. Finding answers, more like.